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Dyke: International management for older heads

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By Andrew Tuft

Saturday 11 January 2014

The chairman of the Football Association, Greg Dyke, has said that international management is best left to more experienced heads, pointing to the experiences of two former England bosses.

England manager Roy Hodgson

Dyke told the Clare Balding Show on BT Sport 1 that he has come to the conclusion that leading a national team is a job for an older manager, whereas club football suits all kinds.

“If you talk to people like Steve McLaren and Glen Hoddle, both England managers,” Dyke said, “I think they will both tell you now that they think they had the job too early, if they had it later they could have added more to it.

“There’s something about International management, because its different from club management, I suspect older people are better at it.”

The current England manager, Roy Hodgson, is 66 and took his first steps in management almost 30 years ago when he was appointed by Halmstads in Sweden. Hodgson has managed across the globe, including in Italy, Switzerland, Norway and Denmark, as well as spells with the national teams of Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and Finland.

His first taste of the Premier League came in 1997 at Blackburn Rovers, with Hodgson later returning to Fulham in 2007. He took over at Liverpool in 2010 and had a year at West Bromwich Albion before England came calling in 2012.

Sir Alex Ferguson was the most experienced manager in English football prior to retiring from Manchester United in summer 2013, and Dyke revealed he attempted to find out the secrets of his success while at the BBC, only to be rebuffed.

“I wrote to Alex and said I want to come and make a film of what you do, he wouldn’t do it,” Dyke said.

“We still don’t know what he did,” Dyke added. “I’m not sure he knew what he did, but he clearly has some ingredient that we haven’t captured.”

Dyke has served on the board of both United and Brentford, seeing football governance at different ends of the financial scale, and has concerns about the future of the lower leagues.

“It’s almost impossible,” he said. “Most of the lower league clubs are supported by somebody who’s quite rich.

“Financial Fair Play is trying to change that, but if you ran football in this country, particularly the lower leagues, on the income you get you couldn’t pay. They are all overpaying players on that basis.”

Greg Dyke was speaking on The Clare Balding Show. To see the full interview tune in to BT Sport 1 at 9pm on Saturday 11th January

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